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Poll: China-Japan ties need mending
By Qin Jize (China Daily)
Updated: 2005-08-24 05:45

Sixty years after the end of World War II, more than half those surveyed in China and Japan are not optimistic about bilateral ties.

However, the majority pin hopes on economic co-operation, which they believe, could bring mutual benefits for both sides, latest opinion polls in both countries show.

Zhao Qizheng (C), Vice-Director of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Chinese People¡¯s Political Consultative Conference, Chen Haosu (R), president of the Chinese People's Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries and Zhu Ling, editor-in-chief of China Daily attend the opening ceremony of the Beijing-Tokyo Forum in Beijing August 23, 2005. [newsphoto]

Seventy-four per cent of Japan's general public and 84.9 per cent of the country's intellectuals and experts regarded ties as either "not very good" or "not good at all."

In China, 54.7 per cent of the general public see ties as at a low point and 78 per cent of students share the view.

However, up to 65 per cent of Chinese respondents and more than 40 per cent of Japanese respondents say economic ties between China and Japan are still on track, and can benefit both sides.

Of Chinese respondents, 59 per cent expressed the hope that the two influential Asian neighbours could better co-operate to manage regional affairs.

While the two sides agree that relations are strained, about 90 per cent of Chinese polled blamed Japan for the situation. More than half of Japanese polled said it was hard to tell who bore responsibility.

The joint opinion poll conducted by China Daily, Japanese think tank Genron NPO and Peking University was released yesterday at the opening of the first two-day Beijing-Tokyo Forum on China-Japan Relations.
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